If you want a new two-tonne 4×4 for the price of a mid-sized family car, the SsangYong Rexton W is just about your only option.
There’s no doubt you get a lot of car for your money, with seven seats, climate control, leather upholstery and 18-inch alloy wheels included in the price. There’s a five-year warranty, too.
However, the Rexton isn’t the most stable of tow cars. At a steady 60mph the car needed regular steering corrections to tow straight, and in the lane-change test it struggled to keep the caravan under control.
Acceleration is quite sluggish, needing 19.8 seconds to pull from 30-60mph, although the five-speed automatic changes gear smoothly.
In the hill-start test a very firm pull of the handbrake was needed to stop car and caravan from rolling backwards, even with the gearbox in ‘drive’. Once underway, though, the Rexton pulled to the top of the hill easily enough in two-wheel drive. To cope with slippery surfaces better, four-wheel drive can be selected with a twist of a switch.
With all seven seats upright, the boot is tiny. However, once the third row has been folded away there’s plenty of room for bags. Towball electrics are easy to access, and SsangYong tells us the compact spare wheel may be used when towing in the event of a puncture. A full-sized spare is available as an option.